Attack ads between candidates running for governor, attorney general and state legislative races in Virginia assault television viewers, newspaper readers (the few left) and users of social media and the Internet.
They also assault commuters who try to listen to their music of choice or local news on car radios during the trip from home to work.
The state, and some local, races carry bitter attacks. If we can believe Republican governor wannabe Ed Gillespie, Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam in in bed with the Mexican gang MS-13 because of a prisoner release program initiated by current governor Terry McAuliffe.
Northam’s folks call Gillespie an “American nightmare” in an ad that shows four children — to Latino boys, an African American child and a Muslim girl running scared from a white man driving a pickup truck adorned with a Gillespie sticker and a Confederate flag.
The ad disappeared Tuesday from the airwaves and from YouTube after an immigrant in driving a rented Home Depot truck ran down people in New York City killing eight and injuring more.
“We held a mirror up to the Republican Party,” said Latino Victory Fund (LVF) President Cristobal J. Alex, which produced the ad.
In state delegate races, attacks have flown back and forth between former television newscaster Chris Hurst and Republican incumbent Joseph Yost of the 12th District. Yost’s ads proclaim Hurst is a puppet of Northern Virginia while Hurst proclaims Yost doesn’t care about the poor and needy in places like Giiles County.
Here in Floyd, the contested local races boil down to a match between current Courthouse Supervisor Case Clinger, the owner of Pizza Inn, and former Supervisor Jerry Boothe, whose retirement from the Board opened the door for Clinger’s first bid for office in 2009.
The race is low key from both candidates. You see yard signs in the Courthouse district, some letters to the editor and a comment now and then on social media. Boothe works voters mostly one-on-one in the district that includes the town of Floyd. Clinger runs as an incumbent and decided not to sit down for a video interview with Blue Ridge Muse for this election. Boothe did submit to one and it will be broadcast later this week.
The only other question for voters in Floyd County is a referendum to allow a “meals tax” add on for restaurants and prepared food in the county. The town of Floyd already has such a tax, which means those who eat at restaurants in establishments within the town limits pay a higher sales tax rate that those who eat at other places in the county.
The county recently submitted a press release on the proposed tax to The Floyd Press but discussion about the referendum has been sparse as the election approaches next Tuesday.